Apr 12, 2021 News
By Shervin Belgrave
Kaieteur News – In 2020 alone, Kaieteur News reported on more than 140 murders which took place across Guyana. Some of them were perpetrated in the most gruesome fashion.
These heinous killings were so disturbing that Kaieteur News saw it fit to highlight 10 of them that sparked outrage amongst Guyanese from all walks of life. While cops have managed to ‘crack the cases,’ the families of these homicide victims still wait patiently to see the perpetrators face prosecution.
In the meantime, these are the 10 most gruesome murders of 2020.
BUTCHERED TO DEATH
On March 27, 2020, the Bartica community which is nestled in Region Seven was shocked by the grisly death of Notoya Speede, 31.
She was the mother of two and a school teacher who resided at Lot 36, 6th Avenue Bartica.
Kaieteur News was told that Speede was hacked to death with an axe, cutlass, and a knife by her reputed husband, Orin King.
What made the crime even more shocking was that he chose to do this in front of his own children, ages 17 and 11.
Many have since questioned, ‘what drove him to murder the woman he loved?’ Some speculated that it might be that he was too jealous. Others suggested she might have been unfaithful.
But only King—who is on remand for the heinous act—can say what led him to butcher the mother of his kids to death.
What media operatives learnt however is that Speede and King had shared an admirable relationship for a number of years, producing two beautiful children.
Residents of the Bartica community who knew them had told this media house that they seemed like the perfect family.
As the years went by however, family members observed that the romantic relationship which they shared began to deteriorate. King, they said, started to exhibit insecure and abusive traits.
It was because of the abuse that Speede reportedly decided to part ways with King. This was just a few months prior to her death.
She is said to have taken the children with her but still allowed them to visit King regularly. But life took a deadly turn on March 27, 2020. Speede had awaken from her bed and started to prepare for a scheduled family photo shoot with her children later that day.
According to reports, her son was at his dad, while her daughter was home with her.
When the hour arrived to leave for the photo shoot, Speede decided to call King to pick them up in his car.
He complied and soon arrived, Speede entered and off he drove with the children in the back seat.
Reports indicated that King had told them that he needed to complete an errand first before dropping them off.
Speede agreed but little did she know that she was being led to a trap.
King reportedly drove towards the Bartica Airstrip and stopped at a bushy, deserted area at around 17:00hrs.
He is said to have gotten out of the car, headed to his car trunk and armed himself with the weapons.
King is then said to have walked towards the front passenger side of the car where Speede was sitting and dragged her out.
He then proceeded to slash, chop and axe her repeatedly and hearing her screams, the children rushed to pull him off of her. But he assaulted them too.
By the time help arrived, King had already left the scene and Speede was found bleeding profusely from her wounds.
She was subsequently rushed to the Bartica Hospital but it was too late; she was pronounced dead.
Her killer was caught by police sometime later. He had tried to kill himself but as fate would have it, he survived and is now behind bars awaiting trial.
BATTERED TO DEATH AND STUFFED IN A BARREL
Mere weeks after Speede’s brutal murder, Kaieteur News was yet again horrified by reports that another woman was killed. The battered and decomposing body of the woman was found stuffed in a barrel, at Belvedere, Corentyne, Berbice.
This publication reported that the discovery was made on April 11, 2020, after a resident of the community awoke to an unbearable stench emanating from a blue plastic barrel lying in a trench opposite his home.
Upon realizing that it was a decomposing body, they alerted police. Crime scene experts observed that the corpse bore multiple marks of violence and suspected that she was beaten to death.
As investigations unfolded, detectives learnt that the battered remains, belonged to Devika Bikram, 24, popularly known as ‘Vanessa’ of 361 Zeelugt, East Bank Essequibo (EBE).
Prior to her discovery, cops learnt that Bikram had recently moved into a wooden house within the Belvedere community with her lover, Suraj Veersammy but he was nowhere to be found at the time.
Detectives on inquiring about his whereabouts soon found that he was not seen since Bikram’s body was discovered.
They also received reports that the couple would often be involved in heated arguments.
Based on this information, detectives listed Veersammy as their prime suspect and launched a man-hunt which later proved successful. The suspect was nabbed on April 12, 2020, near the Canje Bridge, East Berbice.
It took several hours of intense grilling before Veersammy buckled and began recollecting the gruesome details of how he murdered his common-law wife.
In his confession, Veersammy told detectives that he killed her because she had threatened to leave him.
On April 8, last year, around 15:00hrs, Kaieteur News was told that the topic of separation took centre stage during a heated argument between the couple.
Veersammy confessed that he became enraged and attacked his lover. He had beaten her but what he did next horrified many.
The suspect told investigators that he took a bed sheet, wrapped it around her neck, and knotted it tightly. Veersammy then tied the other end of the sheet to a rafter in their house, leaving her hanging some feet off the ground.
He reportedly then sat in a chair and watched his common-law wife wriggling and fighting to free herself. He watched her struggle until her last breath.
After she died, he told police, his intentions were to transport the body to a distant location with his bicycle. While doing so, he told police that his tyre got punctured and he was forced to find another alternative to hide her body hence he stuffed her in a barrel then dumped it in a nearby trench.
STRIPPED, BEATEN AND STRANGLED
Reporters had thought that Bikram’s case was horrible but it was nothing compared to the murder of Margret Dawson. The once jovial 60-year-old was robbed, stripped half naked, beaten and strangled in a burial ground.
Dawson’s severely battered body was found around 05:30 hrs by residents of the Albouystown community, lying in a clump of bushes within the Le Repentir Cemetery.
Some of her personal belongings were found scattered along the roadway leading to where her body was.
It appeared as if she had tried to run away from her attackers but failed.
Dawson was a resident of Curtis Street, Albouystown and was employed as a security guard with Professional Guard’s Service (PGS).
Her grand-daughter recalled exchanging morning greetings with her on May 16, 2020.
Dawson was at the time returning home from work. She was on night shift duties and was scheduled to return to work at 19:00hrs that evening.
No one was home at the time when Dawson left for work that night but it is believed that she chose to walk through the cemetery because she was “running late.”
That decision, however, proved to be fatal, as Dawson never made it out alive.
Detectives on the case soon developed a theory that Dawson was murdered by bandits who ambushed her in the burial ground.
Her gold rings, among other items, were missing. In fact, it was one of those gold rings that led detectives to crack the case and arrest her alleged killers.
The ring was found in the possession of a teenager, who claimed that a juvenile had sold it to him.
Detectives soon located the juvenile and inside of his bedroom, they found Dawson’s other gold rings along with her bank card, ID card and cell phone. A soiled white vest was also found with blood stains.
It was enough for cops to arrest and question him. The interrogation was intense and the juvenile reportedly gave police a chilling statement about another suspect.
The juvenile told police that he was riding a CG motorcycle along Sussex Street, Charlestown, when the other suspect (his friend) approached and asked for a ride.
He detailed that they rode into the Le Repentir Cemetery and saw Dawson walking. The friend, he said, pulled something from his waist and confronted her.
The woman, he recalled, pleaded with his friend not to harm her.
Her exact words—he told police—were ‘I don’t have money, I now going to work.’
Nevertheless, his friend moved to strip Dawson of her belongings and handed him some to keep.
The friend then began to drag Dawson further into the burial ground and upon seeing this, the juvenile said he fled.
Cops managed to track that friend known as ‘Lil Grumbs’ and apprehended him on May 20, 2020.
Both the juvenile and ‘Lil Grumbs’ were charged and are currently on remand for Dawson’s brutal murder.
HAMMERED TO DEATH BY DRINKING BUDDIES
The following month in June, Kaieteur News was yet again met with a report of the grim details of a construction worker, Andy Williams, 45, who was hammered to death by his drinking buddies.
His body had been fished out on June 8, 2020 from a trench at Meten-Meer-Zorg, West Coast Demerara (WCD).
There was a plastic bag wrapped around the man’s head with chop wounds on his hands. At the time of the discovery, Williams’ family members had been looking for him.
He had been missing since June 6, 2020.
Kaieteur News was able to ascertain that Williams had re-migrated from Venezuela and was living with his sister at Zeeburg, WCD.
He had left her home on the evening of June 6 but failed to return.
As detectives got busy tracking Williams’ final movements, an autopsy revealed the extent of how he was gruesomely murdered.
The report suggested that Williams was beaten in his head with a sharp object until his skull cracked. But who were his killers and why did they kill him in such a brutal manner?
It did not take detectives that long to find out who they were and why they did it. They learnt that Williams had a drinking habit and traced his last movement that day to a rum shop in Zeeburg.
He had reportedly left there alive and met up with some drinking buddies from De Willem Village, a fisherman named Afrazudeen Ally, 35 and a 29-year-old labourer, Yudesh Kissoon, called ‘Chucky.’
The two were arrested and what they confessed to police could only be described as a cold-blooded murder.
Ally told the cops he was ‘vex’ with Williams for punching him to the face and breaking one of his teeth.
Driven by this rage, Ally decided to lure Williams into a trap.
Ally detailed for police that he and his accomplice, Kissoon, were sitting at a corner in the De Willem Housing Scheme when they saw Williams passing-by with a bottle of liquor in his hand.
They reportedly called him over in a friendly manner and offered to drink with him. Williams, who had no clue of their plans, agreed. They started the drinking session and as it became darker, Ally allegedly moved on to the next phase of his plan. He is said to have invited Williams to continue the drinking session with them at his home.
When they arrived at the house, Ally made his move by locating a piece of wood and lashed Williams to his head, leaving him unconscious.
Ally did not stop there; he located a hammer and struck Williams repeatedly to the head until his skulled was crushed.
He, along with his accomplice, then placed a plastic bag around William’s head to stop the blood from leaking onto the floor.
They then fetched William’s body and dumped it in the trench before returning to the murder scene to clean up and dispose of the evidence.
ABDUCTED AND STRANGLED ON VACATION
Also making Kaieteur News’ list of gruesome murders is the abduction and strangling of a Canadian citizen, Nicholas Jaipaul, 24, who was on vacation with his grandfather in Guyana.
Jaipaul’s case resembled what is normally only portrayed in movies’— beginning with his abduction on August 16.
Jaipaul and his grandfather, 86, were staying at their vacation home located at Number 69 Village, Berbice.
His grandfather recalled retiring to bed that evening and leaving his grandson awake.
When he awoke the following day (August 17), Jaipaul was nowhere to be seen. Later that afternoon, Jaipaul’s grandfather received a chilling phone call from the abductor. The anonymous caller told the man they had kidnapped Jaipaul and if he wanted to see him again, he must pay a ransom.
Jaipaul’s grandfather, however, reported the matter and cops began to trail the kidnappers.
The phone call was traced and investigators soon found out that the kidnappers might just be the grandfather’s maid and her son.
They were arrested but what had they done with the hostage, Jaipaul?
The maid’s son, who was subsequently detained by police, had confessed to what he had personally done with Jaipaul. He told them that he strangled the man and later burnt his remains.
As he walked police through the details of how he managed to trap and murder Jaipaul, it was quite clear that he was a cold-blooded assassin.
The alleged killer said that he was hired by a rice farmer to murder both Jaipaul and his grandfather.
He had said that his plan saw him visiting the vacation home that afternoon (August 16) to pick sour-sop. The alleged assassin then struck-up a friendly conversation with his victim, Jaipaul, to gain his trust.
Once this was done, he returned later that night and lured Jaipaul out of the house and kidnapped him. His plan was to lure the grandfather out as well by getting him to drop the ransom money at a location, after which, he would capture and kill him.
His plans fell through however as the grandfather decided against paying the ransom and contacted the police instead.
The hired assassin had even taken police to a deserted location where he is said to have burnt Jaipaul’s remains.
He reportedly told police that he was assisted by his brother in carrying out the heinous act.
MUTILATED AND DUMPED ON A COCONUT ESTATE
If Jaipual’s case wasn’t gruesome enough, then it might just be the Henry cousins, Isaiah, 16 and Joel, 19, whose mutilated bodies were discovered on September 6, 2020 on a coconut estate at Cotton Tree Backdam, West Coast Berbice (WCB).
They were found with slashed throats and multiple chop wounds about their bodies. A wound shaped in the form of an ‘X’ was engraved into their foreheads.
News of their ghastly death sent shockwaves throughout the country.
Berbice residents, angered by the way in which the boys were murdered, staged violent protests.
The protests lasted days and travellers passing through the locale were beaten and robbed as police struggled to find leads.
During the violent unrests, another teen, Haresh Singh, 17, was murdered in an apparent retaliation, after his grandfather was initially held for the Henry cousins’ death.
While the Joint Services’ managed to regain control of the area and gained success in ending the protests, it took detectives another three months to make a major breakthrough in solving the gruesome murder.
They arrested three suspects in January 2021, who are currently on remand for butchering the teens.
One of those suspects has reportedly confessed to police and the details he provided into the murders were horrific.
On the September 5, the Henry cousins are said to have gone into the Cotton Tree Backdam to pick some coconuts.
According to the confession, the would-be killers were waiting for them.
The killers suspected that the Henry cousins were responsible for destroying their ganja farm and they wanted revenge.
Their cutlasses were sharpened for the kill. All the cold-blooded murderers needed at this point, was just to lure the innocent teens into a trap and that is what they did.
They invited their prey (the Henry cousins) to share a marijuana joint.
The confession statement noted that while smoking, one of the killers asked the cousins if they knew anything about the ganja farms that had been destroyed. It is alleged that one of the teens laughed. This reportedly triggered one of the suspects who got up and said “like you know something.”
He reportedly followed up those words by drawing his cutlass and chopping one of the teens to the neck.
The other killer did the same to the other teen, while a third person looked on in horror.
The teens were chopped repeatedly until they fell to the ground. The third person was then reportedly called in to assist with the butchering of the two teens.
As the cold-blooded killers hacked the boys to death—the confession detailed—they (the Henry cousins) trembled as their lives left their bodies.
The killers then transported their victims to another section of the Cotton Tree backlands, where they were dumped.
There were four more gruesome murders that followed that year and include a man dumping his wife and young children into a fiery furnace, thereby burning them alive.
A mother was also beaten and stabbed more than 20 times with a screwdriver by her own son and a psychopath saw it fit to date a woman then hammer her to death and murder her 11-year-old daughter by slitting her throat.
A wife who wanted money from her husband, decided that it was time to hire some ‘goons’ who would beat him to death, take his money and give it to her.
Like the previous cases detailed, the perpetrators of these four homicides are still on remand.
In next Monday’s edition, Kaieteur News will explore the infamous Monica Reece case and why her murder still remains a cold-blooded mystery.
To be continued…
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